Technology Maintenance Management: A Powerful Tool for Hotels in 2020

Technology offers brilliant benefits for hotel owners in the right capacity and with the right strategic planning. Like any other technology integration, hotel technologies are highly influenced by the maintenance and upgrades that follow after deployment. 

Once the hotel has opened its doors for guests there must be proactive oversight and maintenance to ensure technology infrastructures are in optimal condition. Today we take a quick look at developing an actionable on-site maintenance strategy for your hospitality technology systems.   

Technology Maintenance in the Hotel Industry 

Hotel technology ‘maintenance’ can be defined as the regular repair, reconfiguration, upgrade, and upkeep of in-house tech systems that assist with everyday guest services. From front & back-office systems to intuitive smart room integrations, every technology touchpoint requires regular ‘health checks’ to assure their reliability. 

Every hotel depending on its size and popularity has unique requirements for maintenance and support. The interesting thing to note here is that on-site maintenance is not limited to I.T. systems only. There are vast implementations including smart appliances, energy management systems, POS machines, etc. that have very specific skilled maintenance requirements. 

Why Establish a Technology Maintenance Strategy for Your Hotel

When hotel owners elect for technology integrations on their properties, they must also prepare for what follows. Modern hotels offer a plethora of technology applications for the modern traveler and are hence required to maintain these technologies for stability & reliability. 

Since most revenue comes from guest rooms, the maintenance of guest-facing technology is of primary concern. In a 2006 research paper, Powell & Watson established that hotels have three core revenue-generating services namely the rooms, food & beverages, and bars. 

In addition, a large number of modern hotels are working on improving their carbon footprints in the local environment. Controlling energy costs and keeping eco-technologies in optimal health requires constant maintenance and oversight to ensure hotel operating expenses are kept in check.  

Most hotel owners consider outsourcing their maintenance strategy development and business continuity management. The core purpose of the hotel technology maintenance strategy is to enhance productivity, increase revenue, and lower operating expenses. Hoteliers can then concentrate on using this competitive edge to attract more guests.

An effective technology maintenance strategy defines the direction and frequency of maintenance of various systems across a hotel. The hotel management must then develop a maintenance schedule that sets out the various timelines of technologies for maintenance. 

Technology maintenance policies allow hotels to identify several important factors including the reliability of tech, safety factors for staff, energy efficiency, and guest satisfaction. So what are all the factors that affect maintenance policy design? 

Here is a list of factors that affect maintenance policy design according to Hotel Maintenance Management: Strategic practices in hotel operation research paper:  

  • Health and Safety 
  • Reliability of system 
  • Energy consumption 
  • Criticality of system 
  • Guest Expectation 
  • System life cycle 
  • Degree of influence in business activities 
  • Annual Budget 
  • Environmental Impact 
  • Feedback from other departmental heads 
  • Hotel Policy 
  • Manufacturer recommendations 
  • Maintenance Resources 
  • Equipment history records 
  • Legal requirement

General business maintenance management categorizes maintenance into two major branches, as illustrated in the following diagram:

Types of Technology Maintenance at Hotels

The Hotel Technology Maintenance Policy 

A technology maintenance policy is not a general document, it is highly dependant on multiple factors. The Journal of Hotel & Business Management breaks up the various aspects of the maintenance policy as follows: 

  • Maintenance Management Team 
  • Maintenance Management Plan 
  • Maintenance Monitoring Activities 
  • Maintenance Knowledge & Communication 
  • Maintenance Identification and Assessment 
  • Maintenance Training 
  • Maintenance Barriers

The maintenance action plan or policy usually begins with identifying all the technology systems that require regular servicing or renovations over time. Once the maintenance areas are identified its time to build a team. 

Hotel owners are highly inclined to outsource the management and formulation of the maintenance policy into more capable hands. Hotel technology management companies specialize in simplifying, securing, and supporting technology maintenance operations. 

The technology management company then takes over as the sole authority to organize, plan, develop, execute, and revise the hotel technology maintenance policy over time. Your technology manager will then plan and hire a proficient team to formulate the maintenance management plan. 

The maintenance management plan will define the service areas, frequency of maintenance activities, responsible teams, requirements for upgrades and emergency repairs, and the automation tools necessary to conduct high-quality maintenance at hotels. 

It will also be the express responsibility of the hotel technology manager to align the timely execution of maintenance activities. Delays and complex issues must be accounted for, while meaningful maintenance reports should be submitted to hotel management immediately.  

Ensuring timely and clear communications with hotel managers and responsible departments is necessary for the technical maintenance process. This guarantees precise reporting to hotel managers, identifying issues, identifying upgrades & renovations, and ensuring hotel management is aware of regular maintenance activities. 

Great emphasis must be put into updating and revising the maintenance management plan due to the evolving nature of technology. As legacy systems get slower and more vulnerable, it becomes essential to replace them with future proof technology.

Routinely revising the maintenance schedule makes room for accommodating new tech to the plan, redefining staff roles, and establishing more concrete maintenance control.

Conclusion 

A technology maintenance management plan is a core aspect of hotel technology management. The great transition of the hospitality business in the USA is readily demanding HTM companies to dwell deeper into the hotel management infrastructure. 

At AHT Inc. we have persevered and strived to deliver highly cost-effective maintenance of hotel technology systems. Equipped with a proficient team of on-site engineers, and off-site support teams we are outfitted with the perfect infrastructure to deliver timely technology configuration and maintenance. 

Get in touch with our team today to discuss your unique hotel maintenance management needs. Our expert consultants will guide you through our intuitive maintenance management guidelines for hotels. 

For more information visit our website and remember to come back for interesting hospitality reads. Until next time, see you again soon.

Toshi Soda

Director Of Sales & Marketing

Toshi Soda is Director of Sales & Marketing at Advanced Hospitality Technologies, a leading fully managed hospitality technology solutions partner. As director of marketing, Toshi is constantly on the circuit engaging & sharing leading-edge technology insights with clients, hotel owners, and hospitality companies. He now assists hospitality professionals with his expert knowledge and insights via online articles, meetings, and conferences.